There are just six weeks remaining until National Signing 2013, and The Fizz is looking to spread some holiday cheer. So put down the eggnog, and toss that ugly Christmas sweater into the trash because we’re unwrapping our annual Fizzmas Wish List: The Top 5 Must-Get Recruits left for the Class of 2013.
5. OG Dionte Savage
2-star 6’5”, 345 lbs. Arizona Western College (Flint, MI)
The monstrous guard plays at one of the most successful junior colleges in the country. He weighs in at a mammoth 345 lbs. and will fill a need on SU’s offensive line. The Michigan native has spent the last three seasons under Coach Tom Minnick (he redshirted his freshman year in 2010) and has Syracuse ranked high on his list. The JuCo has offers from Fresno State and Akron, but will be making a trip to The Hill the weekend of January 18th. Seems like the big pass blocker could be one great CNY visit away from committing to the Orange.
4. DE/OLB Ramar Dennis
3-star 6’1”, 225 lbs. Olympia HS (Orlando, FL)
Dennis is a speedy, athletic hybrid pass rusher from Florida. The 3-star product made the shift from the line to OLB and excelled. That’s music to Greg Adkins ears. He’s been recruiting Dennis hard for the last few months. Ramar is another versatile LB – similar to Florida native and SU commit Malik Brown – who could add great depth if defensive coordinator Scott Shafer decides to play some 3-4. With all of the hybrid DE/OLB’s Doug Marrone have brought in it makes for an interesting debate. Dennis has Syracuse atop his list along with Cincinnati, Florida Atlantic, Illinois and South Alabama. His coach at Olympia, Bob Head, tells The Fizz he’s trying to plan his officials now and SU will be one of them.
3. RB Laray Smith
3-star 6’1”, 185 lbs Xaverian HS (Brooklyn, NY)
The self-proclaimed “fastest kid in NYC” is a must get for Syracuse. The Brooklyn native adds blazing speed to an SU backfield that will have plenty of options over the next two seasons. The All-American tailback has been staying busy this off-season, breaking track records left and right. He’ll also be playing in the Semper Fidelis All-American Bowl in early January. Right now, he still has Syracuse and Tennessee high on his list, but it would be an upset if the Orange didn’t close. After a great official visit a few weeks ago, he continues to stay close with his New York buddies already on The Hill.
2. OT Jaylen Hunter
3-star 6’5”, 275 lbs Arizona Western College (Ponte Vedre Beach, FL)
Savage’s teammate and fellow O-Line mate Jaylen Hunter would also be a huge get for Syracuse. Hunter would be another solid body on the offensive line and could compete right away to provide depth if Justin Pugh decides to bolt for the NFL. Savage will also be visiting the weekend of January 18th. SU is battling with Marshall and USF’s for the 3-star prospect’s services. The odds are good Marrone lands both O-Line targets, but even if he doesn’t, SU has made strides targeting the right program. Although neither Savage nor Hunter fall on ESPN’s Top 100 JuCo list, eight of their teammates do. This is a national JuCo powerhouse every year. Marrone is recruiting the right colleges for two-year players.
1. DE Ebenezer Ogundeko
4-star 6’4”, 245 lbs Jefferson HS (Brooklyn, NY)
SU’s number one target since the summer gave Orange Nation some great news this week. The hulking pass rusher demoted the Gators and added Syracuse to his final two with Clemson. It means SU coaches have been effective and his visit just a few short weeks ago left a huge impact on the Brooklyn native. It comes down to the brothership that’s created by former NY high school players at SU. These New Yorkers are not only being funneled to Syracuse by older players, but city natives want to see their top talent play in-state. In the most recent episode of City Gridiron, a weekly profile of PSAL football, Ishaq Williams’ dad mentioned how significant it would be for Ebo to play at Syracuse. With just about a week and a half left until Ebenezer makes his decision at the Under Armor All-America game, things are still looking good for Marrone and the Orange.
Posted: Kevin Fitzgerald